Ten fantastic live albums from the 1980s

Ten records that deserve to be named among the best live albums of the 1980s.
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Motorhead - No Sleep ‘Til Hammersmith

Continuing the heavy metal theme, here’s Lemmy and the gang with their June 1981 live album No Sleep ‘Til Hammersmith. It's a blast of, loud, fast, hard-hitting metal recorded on tour in the UK (but not at Hammersmith!). This has everything you’d expect from Motorhead and more.

Unusually perhaps, Motorhead opened with probably their most well-known song “Ace Of Spades”. It’s as good, if not better than ever. And that's a theme for the album, the songs performed are often better than their studio album versions. Pacier, perhaps more distortion, and a bit grittier too. It’s a full-on overdrive to the end. If you want to hear Motorhead, start with this brilliant live set. 

U2 - Under a Blood Red Sky

At the time this was released in November 1983 U2 had three albums behind them. Their reputation for music was growing, especially as a live band. Under A Blood Red Sky was a great representation of that. It wasn’t crammed with hit songs, as is often the case on live albums. Neither was it a double album, as tends to be the case. It was just eight songs when released, now described as a mini album. 

It does feature a couple of their best ones, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” and “New Year’s Day” and exceptionally good versions of both. Recorded mainly in Germany, with a top up from a gig at Red Rocks in Colorado, it’s a great live album. It went on to triple platinum status in the US and UK.